View over grassy meadow with view of sunset and mountains in background
McClure Meadow - a wetland in Kings Canyon National Park. Wetlands make up less than 10 percent of the land area in much of the Sierra Nevada but support a large diversity of species.

Photo courtesy of Kelly Bessem, Geoscientist-in-the-Parks Intern

While wetlands occupy a small area compared to forests, they contribute tremendous value to the landscapes where they occur. Wetlands are biologically diverse, and they typically support a large number of species relative to the small portion of the landscape they occupy in mountain national parks.

Wetlands provide critical habitat for wildlife, play an important role in the life cycle of many invertebrate and amphibian species, and provide numerous benefits such as flood control, water and nutrient retention, and sediment storage. Wetlands also serve as destinations for many visitors who are attracted by their aesthetic qualities.

Explore National Park Wetlands

Last updated: March 3, 2023